MyNews24 is a user-generated section of The stories here come from users.

Siriru Kandji
Comments: 25
Article views: 2341
Latest Badges:

View all Siriru Kandji's badges.

Barbel recipe to die from

04 September 2014, 09:00

Articles from contributors on News24 never cease to amaze. They contain a wide range of subjects reflecting the life experience, insight, knowledge, and talent of diverse people. I wish to thank all these writers for enriching our lives.

After reading the unholy *recipe for Exploding Chicken by 10th Dan Grandmaster of Gastronomic Delights (and Steam Locomotive Driver Extraordinaire), Godfrey (PBUH), I’ve decided to share the following exotic recipe with you:

Perfect Roast Barbel

Before we go any further, I have to caution you NOT to share this recipe with anyone outside your closest circle of friends. It has been in my family for hundreds of years, and I made a promise to my old granddad on his *deathbed, never to divulge it to strangers. But you know me – I’m a man with extremely high moral principles. And if you don’t like them, I’ve got some others, as well.

This recipe originates from ancient Egypt. It was found, written in hieroglyphics, against a wall inside the tomb of Ramses IV, who reigned there during the Ming Vase Dynasty.

Ancient Egyptians worshipped many things: cats, rats, flies, crocodiles, papyrus, the Sun, and camels. Especially camels. They loved their camels with a passion – just like Australian men love their sheep – but that’s another story.

More than anything else, they loved barbel; more specifically, Nile barbel (Barbus bynni), which they worshipped as a sacred fish.

Numerous fish mummies have been uncovered inside the Pyramids. Some fish daddies have also been uncovered, although most of them were of the sugar daddy (Sugaratus daddii) variety – unfit for human consumption. (By the way, did you know that the pyramids were designed by the Fair-ou’s, and built by the Black-ou’s? It’s true, I tell you, Sakkie! Just like the Voortrekker Monument and the Union Buildings...)

The most sought-after dish in Egypt was Perfect Roast Barbel. Gourmands on camelback would travel for hundreds of miles through the deserted desert, to sample this epicurean dish from the bosom of the Nile. In those days they had no e-tolls – travelling on the highways was inexpensive and hassle free.

Nowadays you would be hard-pressed to lay your hands on a genuine Nile barbel. But, for those of us who live in Gauteng, it is easy enough to catch one at Hartbeespoortdam.

The damn barbel from Hartbeespoort are said to be quite voracious. They have been known to attack inebriated anglers by jumping inside their boats, and taking bites out of their ears, noses, hands, and so forth, and so fifth, and so sixth. And so on.

Near the damn wall, they grow to an enormous size, and can be shot from the safety of the shore, using harpoons. Or, you could simply buy them from the Zimbabweans, Mozambicans, or Congolese fishermen, who sell freshly-caught fish at the damn wall.

OK. Here we go. Perfect Roast Barbel recipe:

Total Time: 1 hr 55 min
Prep: 20 min
Cook: 1 hr 35 min
Yield: 3 to 4 servings
Level: Easy

1 wooden plank measuring 2x30x50 cm (I prefer mahogany, as it imparts a smoky flavour to the dish)
1 (2 to 3 kg) fresh barbel, head and tail removed

500 ml fresh, full cream milk
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 large bunch fresh thyme
4 lemons
3 heads of garlic, cut in half, crosswise
5 tablespoons butter, melted (The Egyptians used Kerrygold Pure Irish Butter)  
250 g sliced bacon
4 bottles of very dry white wine

Prepare the mahogany plank by coating it with a generous layer of butter. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and half of the bunch of thyme.
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C.
Remove the barbel giblets, heart, pancreas, and other unmentionable, nondescript bits. Rinse the barbel inside and out with milk (It eliminates the distinctive muddy taste that all barbels have.) Remove any excess fat, leftover flippers and fins, and pat the outside dry.

Place the barbel on top of the prepared plank – skin side down.

Liberally salt and pepper the barbel. Dribble with the juice of one lemon and add two halves of garlic.

Cut two of the lemons in quarters and scatter the quarters, thyme, and remaining garlic over and around the barbel. Add freshly ground pepper to taste. Lay the bacon slices over the barbel to cover.
Roast the fish for 1 hour. Remove the bacon slices from the top of the barbel and set aside. Continue roasting the barbel for an additional half an hour, or until the juices run clear when you make a small cut into the meat.

Now for the Grand Finale!

Remove the mahogany plank from the oven, being careful not to burn your fingers. Gently lift the roasted barbel from the plank, and bury it in a shallow grave in your garden.

Now eat the plank.

(You didn’t really think I was going to tell you to eat that bloody, ugly creature from Hell, did you? Well, did you?)

Lastly, rinse your mouth with the four bottles of very dry white wine – to get rid of the mahogany aftertaste. Then drink some whiskey to calm your nerves.


**Perfect Roast Barbel – there is a curse upon this recipe. Whosoever passes it on to anyone else, will kick the bucket until they die from it. That’s how my Granddad came to his untimely end. You have been warned!  


If you don’t hear from me again, you’ll know why. It’s the curse thing, you see?

Disclaimer: All articles and letters published on MyNews24 have been independently written by members of News24's community. The views of users published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24. News24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Luke Waltham
DA's lack of growth at the polls ...

It seems that the DA, following this election, will need to spend a lot of time focusing on itself, finalising its identity and ensuring that the party and its supporters have full confidence in its leadership. Read more...

0 comments 3153 views
The case for an independent audit...

Under ordinary circumstances and in an ordinary democracy, the call for acceptance of the results would be fair in my opinion. But South Africa is no ordinary democracy. Read more...

0 comments 1505 views
Submitted by
Charlene Naidoo
No country for second chances

I generally believe in second chances. In the tenets of human decency and kindness and generosity of spirit and all those good things that we strive for to make our lives – and the lives of others – just a little bit better.  Read more...

0 comments 1877 views
Submitted by
Letter to the editor: The country...

I have argued in News24 and other media outlets that DA supporters are making a mistake to vote ANC as a way of supporting President Cyril Ramaphosa. Read more...

0 comments 6341 views
Submitted by
Luke Waltham
The sad state of activism and stu...

Living in our small, strange bubble of a town that has a multitude of issues that have yet been solved. Whilst it should not just be the responsibility of students to initiate conversations and change, students do have a role to play.  Read more...

0 comments 1419 views
Submitted by
I feel much safer in a foreign co...

Sadly, the majority of the young people who have left to pursue their careers elsewhere are the skilled ones who can add value, be it in the private or public sector. Read more...

0 comments 8184 views


Press Code We subscribe to the Press Code.

E-mail Newsletters You choose what you want

News24 on Android Get the latest from News24 on your Android device.

Terms and Conditions Terms and Conditions - Updated April 2012

Interactive Advertising Bureau
© 2019 All rights reserved.
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.